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Alan Darling

Alan Darling Obituary
Alan Preston DARLING

May 9, 1929 - February 29, 2016

I've put my paints and brushes away and I've got my jug of maple syrup with me. What a wonderful life! I've enjoyed the warmth of a terrific family, the love and companionship of my wife Pat and the satisfaction of gaining so many interesting and loyal friends along the way. I did everything I ever wanted to do and leave you now with no regrets whatsoever.

My first wife Joan and I raised a beautiful family together: sons Mark (Terri) and Blake (Lynda Thomas), and daughter Dana (John Frankruyter). In turn, from three children we gained 11 grandchildren and -- so far -- 18 great-grandchildren. And even though our marriage didn't last, I'm happy to say that Joan and I have remained friends all these many years.

I loved my job as a Graphic Designer and all the people I worked for and with. In retirement, I derived enormous pleasure out of painting in watercolour and was fortunate to become a member of the Canadian Society of Painters in Water Colour, the Central Ontario Art Association and the Toronto Watercolour Society. To all my patrons, thanks so much for your support.

The outdoors was another of my passions and I spent many a happy day hiking and snowshoeing with the Bruce Trail Club, or canoeing and portaging with my son Blake and a great group of friends. As for the garden, it was both my joy (the blooms!) and my frustration (the bloomin' squirrels!). But my happiest times were those I spent travelling with Pat, especially the trips we made across Canada living in a tent -- now what woman would do that and love me at the same time? She is my wife, my lover, my nurse, my mentor, my chief cook and bottle washer and my best friend.

Three special shout-outs: first, to all the fine people we met at the Toronto Sheppard Ave. YMCA, who made exercising so much fun. We did exercise, you know. Well, Pat did some. And thanks especially to the remarkable staff at the St. Michael's Hospital Orthopedic Department and at the Temmy Latner Centre for Palliative Care at Mount Sinai Hospital -- where else can you find a health-care system as caring and compassionate as ours? In my book, Canada is the greatest country on earth.

I do not want you to send flowers or feel obliged to make donations to any charities. Instead, I'd like you to have a nice dinner with a loved one, with a bottle of good wine and, of course, dessert -- the sweeter, the better. 

Goodbye everyone. I love you all.

A Celebration of Al's life will be held on Sunday, March 6, 2016 at the Thornhill Golf and Country Club, 7994 Yonge Street, Thornhill, Ontario, from 2 p.m. until 4:30 p.m. Al would really like it if all his friends could be there.




Published in the Toronto Star from Mar. 3 to Mar. 5, 2016
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